Cheshire Ring Canal Walk
158 km / 98 miles
Cheshire, Gtr Man, Staffs
A route following the towpaths along six historic canals of various ages and character, this Walk offers the solitude of quiet countryside, the hustle and bustle of city streets and views of the Cheshire Plain and Peak District hills. The canals are, anticlockwise from Macclesfield, Macclesfield Canal to Marple; Peak Forest, Ashton and Rochdale Canals into Manchester to join the Bridgewater Canal at Castlefield to follow it to Preston Brook; Trent & Mersey Canal to Hardings Wood Junction near Kidsgrove; Macclesfield Canal back to the start.
Opened on 17th July 1761, the Bridgewater Canal was the first in Britain to be built without following an existing watercourse and began a revolution in transport in the canal era lasting for about 70 years. Francis Egerton, third Duke of Bridgewater, built the Canal to transport coal from his mines at Worsley to the industrial areas of Manchester and it was known as the “Dukes Cut”.
The waymarked Middlewood Way (11 miles and on OS mapping) offers a mostly level and traffic-free route for walkers, cyclists and horseriders on the former Macclesfield, Bollington and Marple Railway between historic mill towns, running parallel with the Macclesfield Canal, providing easy circular walk options.
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